Superfast Seafood

Find great recipes for shellfish that take 20 minutes or less to cook.

Pan-Seared Scallops with Cilantro-Celery Mayonnaise

Randy Mayor

Pan-Seared Scallops with Cilantro-Celery Mayonnaise

Mayonnaise may not be the most common sauce for scallops, but perhaps it should be. Mixed with celery and cilantro to make a sort of high-class tartar sauce, it's a perfect match for the crispy breadcrumb-dredged scallops. Serve with something starchy, whether that's bread, pasta, rice, or potatoes.

View Recipe: Pan-Seared Scallops with Cilantro-Celery Mayonnaise

Thai Green Curry Mussels

Randy Mayor

Thai Green Curry Mussels

Mussels aren't usually cooked with strong flavors so their own taste can shine through, but here the heat and spice of curry paste, moderated by creamy coconut milk, elevate the shellfish. Adjust the spice to your own taste by using more or less of the paste, or try a different variety: red curry paste is somewhat less spicy than green, and yellow curry paste is quite mild, with lots of ginger.

View Recipe: Thai Green Curry Mussels

Chipotle-Lime Crab Crisps

Howard L. Puckett

Chipotle-Lime Crab Crisps

An easy crab salad that has tons of flavor―it includes tangy lime, fiery chipotle, creamy avocado, and crunchy vegetables―is baked on tortilla chips for a unique appetizer. To make it a meal, omit the chips and bake the crab mixture in a baking dish, then serve over lettuce as a main-dish salad, or fill warmed flour tortillas for chipotle-lime crab tacos.

View Recipe: Chipotle-Lime Crab Crisps

Cioppino-Style Seafood Stew

Lee Harrelson

Cioppino-Style Seafood Stew

This is the ultimate meal for shellfish lovers, with shrimp, scallops, and mussels in a simple broth that highlights their natural flavor. Mix and match with whatever is freshest at the seafood counter: clams, lobster, or firm-fleshed fish like halibut all make great additions, and none change the less-than-15-minute cooking time.

View Recipe: Cioppino-Style Seafood Stew

Pan-Seared Halibut with Bell Pepper Relish Recipe

Photo: Johnny Autry

Pan-Seared Halibut with Bell Pepper Relish

This relish also works well with grilled chicken. Serve with a simple spinach salad. Be sure to purchase wild Alaskan halibut for a sustainable choice; avoid Atlantic halibut.

View Recipe: Pan-Seared Halibut with Bell Pepper Relish

Steamed Clams with White Wine and Tomatoes Recipe

Photo: John Autry

Steamed Clams with White Wine and Tomatoes

Cook clams within 24 hours of purchasing in order to ensure freshness. Be sure to throw out any clams that don't close their shells when tapped.

View Recipe: Steamed Clams with White Wine and Tomatoes

Spanish-Style Cod in Tomato Broth Recipe

Photo: John Autry

Spanish-Style Cod in Tomato Broth

When stirring the shallot and broth mixtures, be careful not to break up the fish. Look for wild Atlantic cod from Iceland, Maine, or the Arctic to ensure a sustainable choice.

View Recipe: Spanish-Style Cod in Tomato Broth

Salmon with Red Pepper Pesto Recipe

Photo: John Autry

Salmon with Red Pepper Pesto

If you don't like the bite of raw garlic, drop the clove in boiling water for 1 minute to blanch, then proceed with the pesto.

View Recipe: Salmon with Red Pepper Pesto

Pan-Fried Trout with Tomato Basil Sauté Recipe

Photo: John Autry

Pan-Fried Trout with Tomato Basil Sauté

A tomato sauce moistens the fish, making this company-worthy recipe foolproof.

View Recipe: Pan-Fried Trout with Tomato Basil Sauté

Salmon and Bok Choy Recipe

Photo: John Autry

Salmon and Bok Choy

This super flavorful salmon is made into a complete meal with delicious bok choy.

View Recipe: Salmon and Bok Choy

Quick Shrimp Chowder Recipe

Photo: John Autry

Quick Shrimp Chowder

When preparing this chowder, make sure to buy U.S. wild-caught or farmed shrimp for the best sustainable option.

View Recipe: Quick Shrimp Chowder

Scallops with Spinach and Paprika Syrup Recipe

Photo: Joseph De Leo

Scallops with Spinach and Paprika Syrup

Seared scallops and spicy paprika syrup make for a light and flavorful combination.

View Recipe: Scallops with Spinach and Paprika Syrup

Snapper in Tomato Broth Recipe

Photo: John Autry

Snapper in Tomato Broth

This recipe pulls together in a flash with a short grocery list to boot. To make this meal a sustainable choice, look for Hawaiian gray snapper or Northwest Hawaiian ruby snapper at the seafood counter.

View Recipe: Snapper in Tomato Broth

Seared Scallops with Lemon Orzo

Lee Harrelson

Seared Scallops with Lemon Orzo

Searing over high heat is the best way to cook scallops―it caramelizes the surface to bring out their natural sweetness while keeping the inside from getting rubbery. The orzo cooks in lemon juice and wine for deep citrus flavor that stands up well to the scallops. For a nice variation, try rice or couscous cooked the same way.

View Recipe: Seared Scallops with Lemon Orzo

Mussels with Tomato-Wine Broth

Randy Mayor

Mussels with Tomato-Wine Broth

This recipe's made for two, and it's easy to turn it into a romantic meal: Eat with your fingers, sharing the mussels directly out of the cooking skillet, with a loaf of crusty bread nearby to sop up the sweet-and-briny broth. Of course, you can easily double or triple the recipe and serve in bowls to feed a hungry crowd (don't forget the bread!) as well.

View Recipe: Mussels with Tomato-Wine Broth

Sauteed Clams Parmesan

Randy Mayor

Sautéed Clams Parmesan

Littleneck clams are easily found at most supermarket seafood counters, and can be quite inexpensive. They're also quick to cook, which makes them an excellent but unexpected choice for a weeknight dinner. Seasoned simply with lemon, fresh herbs, and Parmesan cheese, the clams' natural flavor is on display here. Serve over any sort of long pasta, such as linguine, fettuccine, or angel hair.

View Recipe: Sautéed Clams Parmesan

Wasabi Seafood Salad

Beau Gustafson

Wasabi Seafood Salad

The wasabi-mayonnaise dressing in this recipe adds creamy texture and the unique nostril-tingling heat of horseradish. Cooking the clams and shrimp takes just four minutes, making this unbelievably fast to make, and one serving provides a full day's supply of iron with only 220 calories.

View Recipe: Wasabi Seafood Salad

Seared Scallop Salad

Beau Gustafson

Seared Scallop Salad

The velvety tenderness of lightly cooked scallops and the crunch of fresh lettuce and cucumber creates contrast, while pungent raw onion and sweet-sour vinaigrette balance each other in this dish. Bottled dressing is perfectly fine, but it's almost as easy to make your own. Serve the salad with crusty bread, or try a whole grain like bulgur, barley, or wild rice on the side.

View Recipe: Seared Scallop Salad

Steamed Mussels in Saffron Broth

Beau Gustafson

Steamed Mussels in Saffron Broth

Mussels make any meal a special occasion, but they're so easy and quick to cook: This recipe, rich with cream and earthy saffron, takes about eight minutes total. Serve with a loaf of the best-quality French bread you can find for sopping up the sauce and briny juices.

View Recipe: Steamed Mussels in Saffron Broth

Crab, Corn, and Tomato Salad with Lemon-Basil Dressing

Becky Luigart-Stayner

Crab, Corn, and Tomato Salad with Lemon-Basil Dressing

Crab is an elegant and luxurious ingredient, but it doesn't have the high-fat heaviness of foie gras or rich butter sauces. In fact, it's downright delicate in this light salad, served cold. It's perfect for an outdoor lunch or brunch, or as part of dinner on a steamy summer night, with less than 250 calories and six grams of fat per serving.

View Recipe: Crab, Corn, and Tomato Salad with Lemon-Basil Dressing

Almejas con Tomates (Clams with Cherry Tomatoes)

Randy Mayor

Almejas con Tomates (Clams with Cherry Tomatoes)

Every coastal cuisine has a quick-and-easy recipe for steamed shellfish in broth; this one comes from the Basque region of Spain, and uses sweet tomatoes, pungent garlic, and bright lemon to flavor clams. It's also rich in protein and iron, low in fat, and comes in at about 300 calories per serving.

View Recipe: Almejas con Tomates (Clams with Cherry Tomatoes)

Gingered Scallops

Randy Mayor

Gingered Scallops

A hallmark of Asian recipes is creating deep flavor with a few simple ingredients, and this one is no exception. After searing the scallops, deglaze the pan with honey, lemon, soy sauce, and ginger to create a simple sauce whose sweet, salty, and sour flavors meld with the subtle sweetness of the scallops. A lightly cooked fresh vegetable―steamed green beans or broccoli, or sautéed bok choi or spinach―makes a perfect side.

View Recipe: Gingered Scallops

Chorizo-Mussel Noodle Bowl

Becky Luigart-Stayner

Chorizo-Mussel Noodle Bowl

For this filling dish, mussels are joined by big chunks of smoky Spanish chorizo (don't use spicy Mexican chorizo) and lots of noodles in a big bowl of goodness. It's a fine meal by itself, but a small salad or garlic bread would make great sides.

View Recipe: Chorizo-Mussel Noodle Bowl

Spicy Fish Cakes

Becky Luigart-Stayner

Spicy Fish Cakes

Flaky halibut and tender scallops combine here for a unique dish. Panko gives the cakes a crispy exterior, but they're cooked quickly, leaving the inside moist. Ginger adds a hint of Asian flavor, while chile paste kicks up the heat. Serve atop a simple salad or on a bun dressed with Dijon mayonnaise.

View Recipe: Spicy Fish Cakes

Linguine with Clam Sauce

Becky Luigart-Stayner

Linguine with Clam Sauce

In Italy, the pasta partner of clams is almost always linguine. That's probably because the long noodles with a little al dente bite make such a great counterpoint to the plump, chewy clams. The basic and ridiculously easy cooking liquid/sauce will also work with any kind of shellfish, from shrimp to scallops to mussels.

View Recipe: Linguine with Clam Sauce

Scallops in Champagne Sauce

Lee Harrelson

Scallops in Champagne Sauce

Tangy and rich with sour cream and pungent with Dijon mustard, this elegant sauce is at home atop many shellfish beyond scallops: Try shrimp, lobster, even crawfish. Make the sauce and scallops at the same time, and the whole dish takes three minutes. Serve with a fresh green salad for the fastest company-worthy meal you'll ever make.

View Recipe: Scallops in Champagne Sauce

Steamed Mussels with Cardamom, Orange, and Mint

Douglas Merriam

Steamed Mussels with Cardamom, Orange, and Mint

Cardamom, orange, and mint sounds like a combination you'd find in a dessert, but they add a warmth and a citrusy sweetness to mussels that can't be beat. This recipe serves eight as an appetizer, but just double the serving size to make it a main course.

View Recipe: Steamed Mussels with Cardamom, Orange, and Mint

Panzanella with Crab

Randy Mayor

Panzanella with Crab

The key to a great panzanella (a.k.a. bread salad) is a mix of textures: Crunchy onion, juicy tomato, flaky crabmeat, and chewy bread are brought together in each bite here by an herbal vinaigrette with hints of licorice-like fennel. There's no cooking involved, so the salad is fast as can be, but don't assemble until just before serving―you don't want the bread to get soggy.

View Recipe: Panzanella with Crab

Linguine with Garlicky Clams and Peas

Lee Harrelson

Linguine with Garlicky Clams and Peas

Fresh pasta has a substantially different flavor from dried, but you can find it easily in the refrigerated section of the grocery store. Try it in this easy dish and you'll be hooked―the delicate pasta combines with the slightly chewy clams for textural contrast in a briny sauce finished off with the savory flavor of Parmesan.

View Recipe: Linguine with Garlicky Clams and Peas

Salmon with Spinach Salad and Miso Vinaigrette Recipe

Photo: Johnny Autry

Salmon with Spinach Salad and Miso Vinaigrette

The gingery vinaigrette is also delicious with a steak salad. Wild Alaskan salmon is a sure sustainable choice. Avoid farmed salmon.

View Recipe: Salmon with Spinach Salad and Miso Vinaigrette

Seared Scallops with Wilted Watercress and Bacon Recipe

Photo: Johnny Autry

Seared Scallops with Wilted Watercress and Bacon

Watercress offers a refreshing change from spinach and other greens. Scallops are a sustainable buy, but for the best choice, pick diver-caught scallops from Mexico.

View Recipe: Seared Scallops with Wilted Watercress and Bacon

Seared Scallops with Haricots Verts

Photo: Johnny Autry

Seared Scallops with Haricots Verts

Look for diver-caught sea scallops from Mexico for the most sustainable choice. Lemony hericots verts provide a crunchy counterpoint to the seared scallops.

View Recipe: Seared Scallops with Haricots Verts

Seared Scallops with Bacon, Cabbage, and Apple

Photo: Johnny Autry

Seared Scallops with Bacon, Cabbage, and Apple

Quick but hearty, serve this sweet and savory scallop dish with roasted potatoes.

View Recipe: Seared Scallops with Bacon, Cabbage, and Apple

Shrimp Linguine with Ricotta, Fennel, and Spinach

Photo: Brian Woodcock

Shrimp Linguine with Ricotta, Fennel, and Spinach

Fresh packaged noodles and quick-cooking shrimp make this a snap.

View Recipe: Shrimp Linguine with Ricotta, Fennel, and Spinach

Hoisiin Flounder

Photo: Brian Woodcock

Hoisin Flounder

This Asian-inspired fish is quick and satisfying. Crunchy snow peas give a delightful crunch.

View Recipe: Hoisin Flounder

Mussels with Peas and Mint

Photo: Brian Woodcock

Mussels with Peas and Mint

Farmed mussels are a sustainable choice. If you can't find fresh peas, use frozen.

View Recipe: Mussels with Peas and Mint

Seared Scallop Salad with Prosciutto Crisps

Photo: John Autry

Seared Scallop Salad with Prosciutto Crisps

Be sure to pat the scallops dry to ensure an even sear. Also, if serrano ham is available, it makes a tasty substitute for the prosciutto.

View Recipe: Seared Scallop Salad with Prosciutto Crisps

Salmon with Polenta and Warm Tomato Vinaigrette

Photo: Jason Wallis

Salmon with Polenta and Warm Tomato Vinaigrette

This meal is not just a pretty plate. It's quick, delicious, and will no doubt become a family favorite.

View Photo: Salmon with Polenta and Warm Tomato Vinaigrette

Red Pepper Crab Cakes with Lemony Mayo

Photo: Justin Walker

Red Pepper Crab Cakes with Lemony Mayo

Serve with a simple salad of tender butter lettuce leaves and thinly sliced radishes.

View Recipe: Red Pepper Crab Cakes with Lemony Mayo

Spice-Roasted Salmon

Photo: Jason Wallis

Spice-Roasted Salmon

Garam masala, a warm Indian spice blend, makes a simple and flavorful rub for this succulent seafood preparation. Serve the salmon with steamed snow peas and precooked jasmine rice (such as Uncle Ben's).

View Recipe: Spice-Roasted Salmon  

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